The Safe photography Project

Restless Development is working with 12 young photographers on the movement to end violence against children – positively disrupting the point of view on an issue affecting half the world’s girls and boys.

When world leaders meet in Colombia this November for the first-ever Global Ministerial Conference on Ending Violence Against Children, the perspectives of young people need to be central to the conversation. Restless Development is partnering with Conference co-hosts the World Health Organization, the governments of Colombia and Sweden, UNICEF and the UN Special Representative on ending violence, to connect Ministers with young people’s realities.

Restless Development’s young leaders are driving the Youth Power in Action to end violence against children (EVAC) project. They’re accelerating policy change, catalyzing resources, and demanding pivotal discussions to end violence against children. Our team includes diverse voices, including those with lived experiences, disabilities, and various educational backgrounds. 

Through ‘Safe’ – a high-profile immersive photo exhibition – we will tell the story of what feeling safe means to young people around the world. 

The ‘Safe’ project, and the 12 young photographers, will form a powerful part of this effort.  At the November ministerial, Safe will launch a high-profile immersive photo exhibition – telling the story of what feeling safe means to young people around the world. 

In Spring 2024 we led a call-out to find the 12 creatives (aged 18-24), from all regions of the world.  They were invited to submit a 300 word pitch explaining how their proposed photo essay would tell the story of what ‘Safe’ means to them.  Submissions were reviewed by an expert Judging panel of photojournalists, media editors, violence survivors, campaigners and young people from across and beyond Restless Development’s global network.   

Now the photographers are each producing a photo-essay telling the story of what “safe” feels like to them and/or other children and young people in their community.  They will be supported and mentored in their work by the Safe Judging panel (featured below).

Of the photographs captured by each creative, one striking ‘Key image’ will be featured in the final exhibition, taking centre stage at the historic Ministerial, with the full photo-essay published online through a global media outlet.  Running parallel to the in-person exhibition, a new ‘Safe’ online microsite will also feature photographs taken by young people from all over the world on the campaign theme.

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Meet the Judges:

Angela Jimu

Angela Jimu is a storyteller using both text and images living between Malawi and Zimbabwe. She works in writing, visual storytelling, visual culture, visual literacy training, mentoring and coaching aspiring photographers. She is the co-founder and Director of the Zimbabwe Association of Female Photographers (ZAFP) and also a co-founder and Country Director at the Centre for Visual Storytelling, Malawi. She has served as a jury for various photo competitions, most notably World Press Photo, W.Eugene Smith Grant, Ian Parry Photojournalism Grant and Canon Female Photojournalist Grant. 

Carla Bower

Carla Bower is the Managing Editor of Al Jazeera.com, where she leads regional and specialised teams in covering the world’s news from the perspective of those most affected by events. She has a particular love for long-form narrative journalism.

Patrice Evra

As a much loved captain of Manchester United and the French National team, Patrice Evra is the consummate modern sportsman. He is a successful entrepreneur, a glowing example of health and fitness, a motivational speaker and an influential social media personality. Today, he also aims to help mentor and inspire people around the world to maximise their potential, drawing on the challenges he faced: from poverty, to racism to sexual abuse at the age of 13. Born in Dakar, Senegal, Evra came to France at the age of one. His family fell upon hard times when his father left home, leaving him and his 24 brothers and sisters to largely fend for themselves in the tough district of Les Ulis; an area plagued by crime and lack of investment.  Evra’s time growing up there was extremely challenging. But along with other players like Thierry Henry from the same area, Evra triumphed in the face of adversity, always keeping an open and positive attitude towards life. He especially understands what it is like to go without, and he brings this humility to his family life. Evra speaks six languages and has an irrepressible sense of humour and a contagious joie de vivre. Today, his main focus is to give back to others: whether it be joining the fight to end violence against children, promoting gender equality, spreading positivity with his I Love This Game movement, or shining a light on racism and mental health issues in football – Evra is a force of nature and his story is only just beginning.

Derrick Ofosu Boateng

Derrick Ofosu Boateng is an award winning fine art photographer and founder of the African Art movement ‘Hueism’. Inspired by the wisdom of African proverbs and the richness of the continent, he creates vibrant images that veer between visual poetry and color therapy. More recently his work was featured in magazines (Vogue, Bazzar, The Guardian), album covers (A beautiful revolution part 1 & 2 for Common), and even a symbol of struggle and empowerment during the war in Sudan with one of his self-portraits. 

Erika Piñeros

Erika Piñeros is a photographer, multimedia journalist and documentary filmmaker based between Colombia and Cambodia. Her work investigates and documents conflict, human rights violations, migration and other socio-political issues, while exploring the complexities of representation across cultures. Piñeros has told intimate stories exposing underreported issues, like the plight of victims of kidnapping and sexual violence and her work has been published in numerous outlets including Foreign Policy, Al Jazeera, The New Humanitarian and Le Monde.

Etienne Krug

Dr. Etienne Krug is Director of the Department for Social Determinants of Health at the World Health Organization in Geneva, Switzerland. He leads global efforts to prevent violence and injuries, to address social determinants of health and promote healthy ageing. He oversees the development of intergovernmental resolutions and global reports, the implementation of multi-country development projects, and advocacy campaigns. He chairs the International Organizing Committee for World Conferences on Injury Prevention, the United Nations Road Safety Collaboration and co-chairs the Executive Committee of the Global Partnership to End Violence against Children.

Fabeha Monir

Fabeha Monir is a Bangladesh-based visual journalist. As a humanist photographer, she tells people-focused stories exploring social development, climate change, migration, gender violence, and forced exile in marginalised communities. She has worked with The New York Times, BBC News, CNN, NBC News, The Guardian, Elle Magazine, Oxfam, British Red Cross, Action Aid among others. She is the Co-creator of the Virtual reality & Documentary film Immersive Storytelling of Rohingya Refugees funded by Davis projects for peace. She is the Thomson Reuters  Foundation’s  Yannis Behrakis Photojournalism Grant Awardee 2021.   

Joshua Irwandi

Joshua Irwandi is a documentary photographer and a National Geographic Explorer based in Jakarta, Indonesia. While working in West Papua, Indonesia, Irwandi was embedded as museum staff at the Asmat Museum. His project ‘Not A Blank Canvas’ was awarded the National Geographic Society storytelling grant in 2021. Recently, he was awarded the 2021 World Press Photo Award in General News, Grand Prize winner for Lucie Foundation, and selected as a finalist of The Pulitzer Prize in Breaking News Photography, among several other awards. His work has been featured in The Washington Post, The New York Times, NHK, The Times of London, among others.

Lydia Goldbatt

Lydia Goldblatt is a London-based photographic artist. Her work considers themes of belonging, transience and emotional experience.  Her work has been exhibited at the National Portrait Gallery, Somerset House London, the National Museum Gdansk, the GoEun Museum of Photography and the Felix Nussbaum Museum in Germany. Her first book, Still Here, is held in the collection of the Victoria & Albert Museum National Art Library, and her work is held in numerous public and private collections. Lydia received an award for her portrait ‘Eden’ in the Taylor Wessing Portrait Prize, and the GRAIN Projects Artist Commission. She was awarded the Grand Prix at Tokyo International Photography Festival. Her second book, Fugue, is published by GOST Books in 2024.

If you are one of the 12 young people selected to capture your story, you can expect:

  • A stipend of $1250 as a contribution to your time and costs to be involved in this project.
  • Expert training, coaching and one-to-one support throughout the project.
  • One of your images to be featured in the global Ministerial Conference in November.
  • Your final photo-essay will be published online and may feature in national or global publications.

A big thank you to everyone who participated in the Safe Photography Project Contest! Our forms have closed.

Your powerful perspectives could be spotlighted at the first-ever Global Ministerial Conference happening in Columbia this year! The safe photography contest selection is currently in progress. Selected pitches will be announced on our pages soon. Stay tuned!

If you have any queries regarding the Safe photography competition, please email them to:

safe@restlessdevelopment.org